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Shigeru Uchida's Last Work Evokes the Spirit of Mindfulness


  by Yunyi Lau
Left to Right: Chuzo Tozawa, Adrian Cheng and Kiyoshi Hasebe (Image courtesy of Tim Wong)

The Japanese are famous for their efficiency and highly streamlined processes (think vending machine restaurants and Muji) - almost to the point of ritualistic. However they are also masters of traditional crafts with their unparalleled wood craftsmanship and pottery skills, always placing an emphasis on details. Khora, is a combination of these two seemingly contradictory natures of Japanese production. Showcased as part of an exclusive design exhibition, 'Wander from Within', Khora is a collaboration between Adrian Cheng, founder of the K11 Art Foundation and the world renowned Japanese master designer, Shigeru Uchida.

 

Image courtesy of Tim Wong

 

Khora features an artisanal furniture collection that consists of seats and tables attached to woven or gridded screens. Handmade from Japanese bamboo and chestnut, and finished using traditional laquering techniques and Washi paper, the furniture is inspired by the Japanese tea ceremony. 

 

Khora Collection in Nature
Image courtesy of Tim Wong

 

The use of geometric screens create an effect of patterned shadows casting across the pieces, combining Cheng's unique use of fine details and encouraging a re-evaluation of space and nature-culture connections in sequestered settings.

 

Wander from Within showcased at Milan Design Week
Image courtesy of Tim Wong

 

The five-piece Khora collection was the last collection conceptualised by Uchida-san, who died in November 2016 before the completion of the project. Guests at 'Wander from Within' were able to experience the development of the collection, including design concepts and a prototype of Uchida’s famous Tea Room, where he and Cheng held their final design meeting.

 

Tea Room by Shigeru Uchida
Image courtesy of Adrian Cheng

 

The philosophy behind these furnishings are derived from the traditions of Japanese tea culture. This includes finding calmness in the state of sitting, as the mind focuses on the light and shadows of its immediate surroundings, which is something that the exhibition managed to capture.

 

One of the pieces from the Khora Collection
Image courtesy of Tim Wong

 

Speaking about the exhibition, Adrian Cheng commented “What Wander from Within celebrates is the spirit of mindfulness. and Japanese tea culture combined with true craftsmanship. With this collection, we are re-exploring the power and role of furniture, particularly through the simple act of sitting.”

 

 

 


Any views or opinions in the post are solely those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the views of the company or contributors.